Mesa, AZ (population: 474,115) has six catering schools within a 100-mile radius of its city center. Scottsdale Culinary Institute, the highest ranked school in this group with a catering program, has a total student population of 1,522. It is the 2774th highest ranked school in the USA and the 35th highest in the state of Arizona (#1 is Northern Arizona University).
Catering students from Mesa schools who go on to become caterers, professional caterers, food service managers, food service directors, etc. have a good chance at finding employment. For example, there are 11,218,260 people working as food preparation and serving related employees alone in the US, and their average annual salary is $20,880. Also, Meeting and convention planners make on average $48,060 per year and there are about 51,530 of them employed in the US today. In fact, in the Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale area alone, there are 680 employed meeting and convention planners earning an average salary of $48,110. Food preparation and serving related employees in this area earn $21,680/yr and there are 154,910 employed.
Mesa lies in Maricopa county, which is one of the 15 counties in Arizona. Overall, the Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale area has 1,763,410 total employed workers according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, with a 1% unemployment rate, $20/hr average worker wage, and a $41,930 average annual salary. Thus, about 88 out of every 1000 jobs in Mesa are held by food preparation and serving related employees, and 0/1000 are held by meeting and convention planners.
Of the 6 catering schools with a 100-mile radius of Mesa, only 3 have a student population over 10k. After taking into account tuition, living expenses, and financial aid, Scottsdale Culinary Institute comes out as the most expensive ($44,966/yr) for catering students, with Pima Community College as the lowest, reported at only $3,259/yr.
|Name||State||Population||# of Schools||Avg School Rank||Total Programs||Distance from Mesa|
|Casa Grande||AZ||47,388||1||16.7022||3||36.7 miles|
|Prescott Valley||AZ||41,046||1||8.12951||6||88.8 miles|